Olivier Py
The Young Girl, the Devil and the Mill
A Grimms’ Fairy Tale

English Language World Premiere

Saturday & Sunday, March 2 & 3, 2019

FIAF Florence Gould Hall

Musical Theater • Ages 7 & up • 50 mins • In English

TILT 2019 opens at FIAF with The Young Girl, the Devil and the Mill, a musical written and directed by celebrated theater maker and director of the world-renowned Festival d’Avignon, Olivier Py.

The brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm spent years gathering the folklore of northern Europe, collecting countless versions of dozens of tales, often changing the story to spare bourgeois sensibilities. Inspired by their work, Olivier Py molded their stories into a musical for young audiences, introducing them to the mysteries and conventions of “real” theater without condescension or sentimentality.

The Young Girl, the Devil and the Mill tells the story of a naïve father who makes a deal with the devil without realizing that this bargain comes with the sacrifice of his own daughter. But the young girl flees and begins a journey fraught with perils that introduce universal questions about death, evil, love, war, memory, and fidelity.

The Young Girl, the Devil and the Mill is the first English language production of La Jeune Fille, le Diable et le Moulin, which premiered in 1993 at the Centre dramatique national of Sartrouville as part of Heyoka, and re-premiered at the 2014 Festival d’Avignon.

This English language production was specially commissioned for TILT Kids Festival 2019. Py has re-created his play with an American cast, introducing New York audiences to his poetic exploration of the journeys young people take as they begin to understand the complexities of human existence.

Alex Burnette, The Prince
Nadia Duncan, The Girl
Whit K. Lee, The Devil
Ben Rauch, The Gardener

Creative Team
Text & Direction: Olivier Py
Assistant Director: Bertrand de Roffignac
English Translation: Nicholas Elliott
Music: Stéphane Leach
Music Director: Ben Rauch
Lighting: Bertrand Killy
Stage Managers: Clarissa Ligon, Emily Paige
Wardrobe Supervisor: Eleanor O’Connell
Design & Fabrication, US Tour: Crozier Studio
Casting: Stephanie Klapper C.S.A.
Producer: Festival d’Avignon
Executive Producer: French Institute Alliance Française
English-language production commissioned by TILT Kids Festival, co-organized by the Cultural Services of the French Embassy and French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF).

Two Shows, One Day!
See both She No Princess, He No Hero and The Young Girl, the Devil and the Mill on the same day for an afternoon of artistic adventures and a fun festival experience. Buy Package

Dress Up Lunch
Saturday, March 2 from 12:30-2pm
Join us for a fun dress up mealtime celebration on the first day of TILT 2019. Maman Bakery picnic baskets will be available for purchase.



Discounted two-show package includes same-day tickets for She No Princess, He No Hero and The Young Girl, the Devil and the Mill.

FIAF Florence Gould Hall
55 East 59th Street,
New York, NY 10022

About the Artist

Born in Grasse in 1965, Olivier Py moved to Paris after graduating high school. He joined the Conservatoire national supérieur d’art dramatique in 1987 and began studying theology. The following year, he directed his first play, Des Oranges et des Ongles (Oranges and Nails), and founded his company L’inconvénient des boutures. In 1995, he made a splash at the Festival d’Avignon with his direction of his own work La Servante (The Servant), a cycle of plays lasting 24 hours. In 1997, he was appointed director of the Centre dramatique national in Orléans, which he left in 2007 to become director of the Odéon-Théâtre de l’Europe in Paris. In 2013, he became the first theater director to be named director of the Festival d’Avignon since Jean Vilar. In addition to directing theater and opera, Py is a dramatist, film director, actor, poet and prolific author. His political engagement has inspired him to adapt many plays in which politics take center stage: Aeschylus’s Seven Against Thebes, The Suppliants, and The Persians; Shakespeare’s King Lear; as well as his own texts, such as Orlando, The Impatience, and Die Sonne. Since writing the novel Le Cahier noir (The Black Notebook) when he was 17 years old (published in 2015), he has written countless texts in various genres, including plays, young adult books, essays, prefaces, translations, scenarios, etc. With The Parisians (2017), the director adapted one of his own novels for the stage for the second time, following 2015’s Hacia la alegria. In 2018, Py wrote and directed Pure Present, a tragic and contemporary trilogy that violently attacks financial strategy and the dehumanization of markets. He is currently working on a children’s opera that encourages his target audience members to believe in their dreams so that the world can find its redemption and a future in them. As an artist and citizen, Py takes a stand and engages in many political and societal struggles: for a strong French and worldwide cultural policy, against the rise of fascism, and denouncing any form of social and humanitarian injustice.

Photos © Christophe Raynaud de Lage, Festival d’Avignon